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So You Watched Seaspiracy and Want to Stop Eating Fish- What’s Next?

"Seaspiracy" is a new Netflix documentary that was released in late March of 2021. It had been on my watch-list for a couple of weeks, and even though it always stared at me every time I opened Netflix, it took a while for me to pluck up the courage to watch it. I know that sounds silly, but I can get really in my head about the overwhelming environmental issues plaguing the planet. It's very easy for me to feel hopeless. 

The movie follows a filmmaker hell-bent on discovering the best way to protect the ocean and marine life. I won't spoil the movie, but what he found was arguably more sick, twisted, and corrupt than I originally imagined. Fishing has become incredibly industrialized, and because everything is happening out in the middle of the ocean with no watchful eyes, it is incredibly difficult to regulate. What makes things worse is the commercial fishing industry is subsidized by the government. And this is just in addition to the horrendous environmental impact of fishing and whaling. 


Long story short, there's a lot of messed up stuff going on and the only thing that I personally can do about it is this: stop eating fish.  I'm not gonna lie, this kinda sucks. I just got into sushi! But never fear! There are ways to stop eating fish while enjoying 'seafood' and keeping yourself healthy.


One of the many groundbreaking things revealed in the documentary was that fish do not actually have Omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, it is the algae that the fish eat that give them those omega-3s. So why not cut out the middle man? If you are worried about your omega-3 intake, there are plenty of supplements available- just make sure to grab one that is algae-based. 

On the grounds of enjoying plant-based 'seafood', I have to say that I haven't had a lot of it, but I'm very excited. A few weekends ago, my mother and I took a little shopping trip to University Village and we ordered fish tacos from Veggie Grill, a vegan fast-food-ish restaurant. They were absolutely amazing. Not at all lacking in flavor and very filling. 

Luckily for me, I live in a big city with lots of grocery and restaurant options that have vegan options, or plant-based 'seafood.' But not everyone has that. Don't be hard on yourself if you try to stop eating fish but slip up a few times- it's a learning curve. I certainly don't expect myself to be a perfect vegetarian. I only switched to almond milk a few years ago. 


I would highly recommend this documentary to anyone seeking to know more about the commercial fishing industry and how it's affecting our oceans and our earth. If you want to know more about how we get our food on land, there is this great documentary called Food, Inc that not only made me rethink what I buy, but also gain a greater respect for the work good honest farmers do.  


Ashley is a Senior at the University of Washington, Seattle, double majoring in Political Science and Journalism. She likes watching movies, finding fun restaurants, and hanging out with friends.
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